Cape Lookout National Seashore certified as International Dark Sky Park
Cape Lookout National Seashore has been certified as an International Dark Sky Park. The designation recognizes the park’s quality of starry nights and the opportunities for star-gazing and other astronomy-based activities for visitors. Cape Lookout is the first East Coast Dark Sky Place in the National Park Service to receive the certification.
According to a news release, the application process to receive the certification took two years and involved partners like Crystal Coast Stargazers, Core Sound Waterfowl Museum and Heritage Center and the Carteret County Chamber of Commerce. The certification also required light fixtures within the park and surrounding areas to be retrofitted or replaced with dark-sky friendly lighting.
“This certification is both an honor for our community and recognition of the unique values that make this park a national treasure,” said Jeff West, superintendent of Cape Lookout National Seashore. “Embarking on this project helped me remember the wonder and amazement I felt gazing into the night sky as a child. The possibilities I imagined then are still there, dwarfing life's daily demands when put in perspective. Maybe we all need a little star gazing right now.”